Recruiting and organising Black members in the fragmented workforce

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Conference
2017 National Delegate Conference
Date
23 February 2017
Decision

It is important that Black workers and members are equipped for the challenges within the changing and evolving landscape of the UK today. Conference recognises that a high proportion of Black workers eligible to join UNISON work in the fragmented workforce where they experience low pay and poor working conditions.

Conference believes that recruitment is more than just handing out leaflets. Branches need assistance to reach out to Black workers and members in the fragmented workforce. These workers need a revised strategy to engage them as the traditional approach is weak at best and not effective at worst.

Our existing members in this niche sectors need to be organised and encouraged to become activists. They will then need continual support, bespoke training and mentoring.

UNISON should explore effective and clear pathways which will assist Black members in not only developing as activists, but becoming leaders for the future.

It is therefore important that financial reasons do not become a barrier to Black members in the fragmented workforce becoming active. If an employer does not recognise trade unions (UNISON), it does not have a legal duty to give members paid time off to attend training to become workplace reps or health and safety reps etc.

Conference calls on the National Executive Committee to work with the National Black Members Committee to request:

1)Information and resources targeted at Black members and workers in the fragmented workforce;

2)Providing financial assistance for members who wish to become workplace representatives but are unable to access paid time from their employer;

3)Further specific training targeted towards potential Black leaders;

4)Joint working with the newly developed Private Contractors National Forum and explore how this might be achieved.